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The Campaign Prayer Book


The Campaign Prayer Book

This little book (measuring just 5 x 2-3/4", or 12.5 x 7cm) was intended for use by American service personnel in World War I. It is basically the 1892 Book of Common Prayer, with a number of pages and services omitted, and with the addition of an Introduction (below) and some prayers. The front end papers additionally have a list of scripture verses, a short Prayer for a Soldier, a presentation page, and the text of the Star Spangled Banner; the rear end papers have the texts of Onward Christian Soldiers, America, and the Battle Hymn of the Republic. The book was published by Thomas Nelson & Sons of New York. There is no publication date, but an inscription in my copy is dated May 1918, so it was published some time before that.

Besides the HTML pages below, we also have the entire book as PDF graphics, the uncorrected text "behind" the graphics.

Another, similar book, A Prayer Book for the Public and Private Use of Our Soldiers and Sailors, is available online from Google Books in PDF graphics.


The Campaign Prayer Book


  Morning Prayer
  Evening Prayer
  The Litany
  Collects, Epistles & Gospels to be used throughout the Year
  Holy Communion
  The Psalter

  Special Prayers
  An Alphabetical Table of the Collects
(Items in grey are unchanged from the 1892 BCP)

 Download the entire book as PDF graphics (size = 11MB).




TWO reasons have led to this publication. First, great numbers of our men and women in service love to carry prayer books, but space and weight in military equipment are of immense importance. Even the smallest of prayer books is too bulky. Parts of the prayer book are not essential or useful to the man or woman in service, i. e., the thirty-nine articles will scarcely be thought essential to the man in the trenches. This book, even with the additions for personal use, is much smaller than any elsewhere to be obtained.

The second reason for this little book is that it contains the regular services used in the Church for public worship. From my own experience as Chaplain, I find that the men love to read over the regular services of the Church. There is something heartening when they know that the service which they themselves are reading is the same service that their loved ones in distant homes will be using. Such associations rouse the noblest sentiments of the heart. It is one of the glories of our Church that around the world, following the course of the sun, the same divine instructions and prayers and praises are on the lips and in the hearts of her children day by day and year by year. No book in the world has so deepened the sense of human brotherhood.

It is often impossible to carry the Bible while in active service. When this is so the Prayer Book, in its Epistles and Gospels, offers Bible selections of the loftiest inspiration. These, together with the Psalter, furnish adequate Bible readings.

In addition, one does not forget that the Prayer Book sets before its readers the noble records of the saints.

Together with these services of our liturgy best defined by the word "common," it has been thought well to include certain prayers, chosen from various sources approved by our bishops, which this time of warfare has already tested and proved helpful.

I desire to express my obligation to my associate, the Rev. J. B. McCormick for valuable suggestions in this compilation.

(Vicar, Chapel of the Intercession, New York;
later Dean, Cathedral of St. John the Divine)



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